Chapter 55, Dr. Clay (Cult of Eros #1, Ongoing Update)

Dr. Clay Novel by M. Gaspary Featured Image - Free Chapters
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Here’s chapter 55 of the new book, Dr. Clay, I’ve been writing since NaNoWriMo 2022. Enjoy reading. Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below.

You’re alone. Work until you get what you want. Clay thought as he stared at the blank page, tapping the pen on the surface. He tried not to think about anything but his work, and to some extent, he succeeded. Work was definitely what he needed. It was the best medicine money could buy. Out of sight was out of mind, he thought. He tried not to think about the way Valon looked or the way he acted. He mostly tried not to think about how he kissed, but it didn’t work. Memory was insidious, wending through his mind in brief but potent flashes.

Only intermittently did images flash through his mind—Valon’s eccentric looks, Valon’s penetrating gazes, Valon’s long curls, Valon’s friendly smiles, Valon’s very male, alluring scent, Valon’s passionate embraces and kisses—but he pushed them as quickly as they came.

By way of punctuation, Clay snapped the binder shut. He sighed, suddenly sheepish, as he fiddled with his earring. He freed one of his hands to rub the side of his nose under his glasses. When the glasses had stopped bobbing, his fingers were laced again. His wariness persisted.

It was over. He had to put that in mind. So, he immersed himself in a lot of work, thinking they would help. Besides, he loved what he did. He loved his job. And there was a lot to keep him busy.

But that wasn’t how his eyes looked. They were earthy, and there was no way his glasses could mask it. He could barely move or breathe. At a reluctant admission, he shook his head, even though a deep sense of guilt overflowed his being. He knew he couldn’t do anything. He did what he felt right doing, although leaving Valon felt like the biggest mistake.

Promise me. You will never leave me again.

He stretched out his fingers and tossed a glance at the silver ring Valon had given him. He took it out and examined its features—an ancient Celtic pattern engraved on the exterior. His eyes appreciated the fine details he thought best suited to Valon’s tastes. Simple but sophisticated. Minimal but symbolic.

While he turned the ring, tailing the flow of its design, he noticed something inside. He clucked, adjusting his eyeglasses, and looked closer at the words engraved. “925.” He paused and turned the ring. “It’s nice you exist,” he whispered.

That one-sentence liner was enough to stab his heart.

How could he leave him like that? He asked, feeling the ache in his heart. And he continued asking himself difficult questions, thinking it was an option for distraction, thinking he could find any sense of what he did. Though breaking up wasn’t a crime, it felt like he was ready to turn himself in.

And then…

“Doc, you have a package,” the nurse said, marching in. She handed the box to him with the sheet of paper he needed to sign.

“Thank you. But I don’t think I ordered something online or….” He paused to check the address. His eyes widened and narrowed in suspicion.

It was from Valon.

Until now, Clay was taken aback to realize that Valon could still capture his heart. He didn’t even need to be physically present to keep his presence alive. “How are you, Val?” he muttered under his breath.

What did I do?

“Yes, Doc?”

Startled, Clay shook his head in frantic. “Nothing.”

Feeling defeated, he sighed as he signed the piece of paper and then handed it to her. While his eyes glued to the package, he leaned against his chair and pressed his fingers on his temples while the other hand played with the pen. He briefly shut his eyes, trying to calm down, only to find no relief. He sighed. It wasn’t a sigh of relief. It was remorse.

Because in his heart, he still loved the man.

He couldn’t accept the decision he had made. He had already thought he was going crazy after he made the tough choice. He was beyond that.

Then, he heard the nurses outside talking. And they became louder and louder. His eyes narrowed as he kept listening to their conversations. When one of them glanced at him with worry printed on her face, he couldn’t help but wonder. What was it about?

“Doc, you need to see this,” the nurse said.

He rose from his seat and walked in their direction. He looked at the television and saw the news. His heart skipped when he saw a group of police cars surrounding the mansion and two men dragging his father in handcuffs.

“A warrant of arrest was released by the Department of Justice just a couple of hours ago. The arrest was made against Dr. Saturnino Elizondo for medical malpractice-turned-homicide twelve years ago….”

The next scene showed a crowd with huge signage outside the foundation. They screamed the words, “Elizondo! Indict. Indict. Indict. Elizondo. Guilty. Guilty. Guilty.” Many brought massive tarpaulins and caricatures made of cartons, wearing the surgeon’s scrub. They danced as they paraded the streets, blocking the traffic.

While the news anchor’s voice remained in the background, discussing the details, the next shot showed his father again. But this time, he was walking closer to where they parked the police car. When one of the police officers opened the door and was about to assist, the old man collapsed shortly before shoving him into the police car.

Shocked, Clay ran off his clinic, heading out without a word.

Clay stared at his father lying on the bed when he was alone. The life support system was attached everywhere. He stood beside the bed and checked his vitals. Looking fine. But when his mind reeled over his moments with this man, he frowned.

To say he was angry was an understatement.

He couldn’t get over this old man’s actions, let alone forget how he treated him as his son. He had spent quite an amount of time resenting his life, counting the days he wished to have died. Let alone forget the fact that he had never felt love.

As he stared at him, he couldn’t believe he looked so innocent when asleep. But he also knew this man was wicked when he opened his eyes. Even though he stood there watching him, he wished he could tell him he had met his victims. They’re wonderful people. He loved and adored them.

But thanks to him, he destroyed their lives. He was fine, Clay thought, knowing he never loved him as a son. However, when he met Valon and learned his story, it was painful to realize the cruelty his father did to his family. Rather than apologizing for what he did, he fooled everyone into believing he was innocent and forced them to drop the case against him.

When he snapped back to his senses, it was the first time he noticed he was in tears. He flicked his head and looked in the distance while wiping his eyes and cheeks. He expelled a sigh before he headed out. But as he left, he looked at the old man and then moved his attention to life support and the intravenous tube lines attached to him.

Author’s Note:

Thank you so much for spending time reading this chapter. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did when I wrote this part three months ago. This chapter, in particular, reminded me of those times when I sat before my desk, seemingly prepared to type in words, but I struggled to keep it up.

It took an external motivation to get it through, and, at that time, the NaNoWriMo event was upcoming. At that time, I thought, “This could be a great opportunity to try and give this a shot one more time. You’d done an excellent job with ‘The Rival,’ so you could do it, Mecyll.”

You know, it’s easier said than done because writing a chapter with a clear intent to finish it requires more than just a skill. Since I started writing fiction, I realized how much this work demands my ability to be naked and the guarantees to answer whether I was mentally, emotionally, and spiritually prepared to face my fears, conscious or unconscious.

So, being able to write this down meant I managed despite the countless times dancing around with depression and enjoying the roller coaster rides my anxiety provided me.

This is why I don’t know how to thank you for your support, regardless of the scale or contribution size, from sharing my work with others or buying my books. It doesn’t matter because, for me, every small act you show is appreciated.

Again, thank you, and have a great day!

If you like to support my writing life, here’s what you can do:

  1. Get a copy of “The Rival” Uncensored Gay Romance Novel.
  2. Check out my upcoming book, “Non-Native Speakers Only.”
  3. Find more writing tips on my website (i.e., content writing, freelance writing, copywriting, self-publishing, novel writing, and many more!)

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